Retiree Pass Travel UPDATE              February 6, 2013                           

1)  ETC sending some retirees pass travel usage reports

       If you do not receive a usage report or a 1099 it means you do not owe any taxes as imputed income for pass travel. Retirees have not had the ability to view pass travel reports online so the Employee Travel Center has sent letters and pass travel usage reports to retirees who have “taxable pass rider” travel in 2012 that exceeds $600.  This information is being compiled and sent out in support of the forthcoming tax Form 1099.

       As mentioned in the RAFA Pass Travel Update on October 5, 2012, retirees’ “taxable pass riders” (enrolled friends, domestic partners, same sex parents, and non-dependent children) accrue imputed income taxes when traveling on United using personal and vacation ePasses as well as myUAdiscount tickets.  If the tax total for all taxable pass riders exceeds $600 in one year, the retiree will be sent a Form 1099 to be used when filing taxes with the IRS.

       The ability for retirees to see travel reports in “All About Me” is on the IT list of future enhancements.  In the meantime, retirees can get an estimate of imputed income taxes per segment by using the Pass Calculator in employeeRES > Quick Links.

       Under the old sUA pass policy, companion pass fares were greater than the imputed value, so no taxes were due.  Under the new harmonized United pass travel policy, the fares for taxable pass riders are less and even free in some cases, so imputed taxes accrue.  An explanation of how these taxes are calculated and an estimate of imputed income taxes per flight segment can be found by using the Pass Calculator in employeeRES > Quick Links.

2) Must use current (2013) family vac passes with taxable pass riders    

     Unused 2012 family vacation ePasses are valid through Dec 31, 2016. On January 1, 2013, eight new family vacation ePasses were added to your ePass Account, which are valid through Dec 31, 2017.  When family vacation ePasses are used, the system will deduct the older passes first, except when traveling with taxable pass riders or when taxable pass riders are traveling unaccompanied. In those cases, the system will deduct a family vacation ePass from the current year allotment, in accordance with IRS regulations.  View your family vacation ePass Account in employeeRES > My ePass Balances.  Click on “View detail” to see how many ePasses you have and their expiration dates.  You can then click on “View Details” to see a list of used ePasses and flight information.

3) employeeRES link for smartphones, iPads and tablets

    Use on your smartphone, iPad, tablet, etc. while traveling on United to check on seat availability, pass rider lists, flight status and to change listings.  Save the link as a “bookmark” on your mobile device for quick access.  NOTE: clicking on the “Travel” link will take you to mobileRES, which is an easy way to book fee-waived travel.  When you use mobileRES for service charge pass travel, scroll to the bottom of the screen and click on “Full Site.”  This will allow you to navigate to employeeRES where you can book using a credit card as payment. 

4)  Other airline travel: 15 new carriers added to ID90T website

    Now there are over 35 carriers that participate, making it easier for retirees to obtain e-tickets! See the announcement on FlyingTogether>Travel>News&Bulletins.

    For discount space available travel on Other Airlines visit:

    FlyingTogether>Travel>Travel Programs> OtherAirline/InterlineTravel.

a)  Select a carrier by using the drop down menu to access the Interline Agreement.  Read who is eligible to travel, how to obtain tickets, how to list for flights, and other rules about that particular airline.

a)  Obtain tickets (either via ID90T for eTickets or the ZED ticket request form for paper tickets) by using links on the Other Airline/Interline Travel page. Instructions for using ID90T are there, including a WebEx tutorial and an informative PDF. NOTE: ID90T eTickets are almost instantaneous; ZED ticket requests take longer and involve a trip to a United ticket counter to secure the paper ticket.  Remember to plan ahead.

i)     List for the flight (not required for certain ID90T carriers). Seventeen carriers now let you list on the MyIDTravel website, for others you must call an 800 number. On some ID90T carriers you can check-in online 24 hours before departure and print a boarding pass at home!

i)     The ticket refund processes for ZED tickets and ID90T are listed at the bottom of the Other Airline/Interline Travel page.

5) Retiree Badges

     The necessary IT work for retiree badges is currently being finalized and while we don’t have an exact completion date as yet; it appears they may be available 2ndquarter this year.  In the meantime, remember that verification letters can be printed online through employeeRES > Quick Links > Employee Profile.  Watch for future communications on Flying Together.  Some retirees have reported badges were available in SFO from the MOC (Maintenance Operations Center). These badges are ONLY for retirees who previously worked at the MOC and are still in the MOC database.


6) International SOS    

    United has partnered with International SOS to help employees and retirees with free advice and assistance while traveling abroad.  Actual medical services rendered would be paid by the retiree. For details go to Flying Together > Travel > Additional Information > International SOS.  Read the information and print out a free membership card that contains access phone numbers. 

7)  WebEx video tutorials and pdfs for pass travel are online now

    Comprehensive, step-by-step guides to access and use employeeRES have been enhanced.  To access these guides go to Travel section on Flying Together and click on “WebEx Sessions & Reference Guides” on the left panel or under Reference Guides on the Travel page.  There are several tutorials to watch; most helpful are “How to create a space available leisure travel plan” and “How to buy an interline eTicket through ID90T”.  A network recording player is downloaded to play the tutorials; just click to download it if you’re looking at them for the first time. If you prefer to read a pdf of each tutorial, they are available on the WebEx sessions page.  Retirees are not eligible for business travel and do not have buddy passes, so there’s no need to view those sessions.

To become more familiar and adept at checking seat availability, pass rider lists and creating a booking, the WebEx tutorial sessions are valuable tools and worth watching.

8)  What happens when your enrolled friend has a baby?

    Children of retiree’s enrolled friends are not eligible pass riders.  However; an enrolled friend (at least 18 years or older) may pass ride with a child 8 days to 24 months of age as a lap child.  If the pass rider wants a separate seat for the baby, a revenue ticket would need to be purchased.  For infant travel details go to Flying Together > Travel > Travel Policies > View More Policies > Infant Pass Travel Policy.

9) Getting United pass travel refunds you paid for with a credit card

    Instructions are here: employeeRES> Quick Links> Request Refunds

10)     Follow the rules for pass travel listing!

      From page 2 of FlyingTogether>Travel>Travel Policies> Pass Travel Guidelines:

Pass riders may not hold more than one positive- space or space-available booking per day for the same origin and destination.”  If you are not boarded on a flight, ask the gate agent to roll you over to the next flight.

11)      $80 credit on MileagePlus Explorer Cards from Chase

     If retirees participated in the 2012 MileagePlus Visa rebate program and are the primary card member of the Explorer Card as of March 1, 2013, a credit of $80.00 will be added to your April statement.  Annual fees must still be paid to Chase as this is a program offer based on the partnership between United and Chase.  For more information see the FAQ’s (Frequently Asked Questions) on Flying Together > Corporate > Employee Discounts > Credit Cards > MileagePlus Explorer Card Employee Offer > Frequently Asked Questions.

Compiled by Kirk Moore, RAFA Travel Benefits Committee            02/06/2013



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